Well, now we know at least one person is running for mayor.

I think Stephen Mandel’s decision to run again came as no big surprise. As he said when he announced his intention to seek a third term, he has a lot of unfinished business he wants to take care of. As a result, this election is really about giving him a mandate to continue doing what he’s been doing.

I think most people would be supportive of the LRT extension, his concern for the homeless, the repair of our aging infrastructure and creating a sustainable city. The Expo bid, a downtown arena and continued support for the Indy, maybe not so much.

Now the question is who is likely to run against him? I think Mandel still has the support of the special interest groups that helped him get elected the last time and that would make anyone think twice about running.

I’m not a fan of political coronations so it would be nice if there were a truly legitimate candidate with a different voice and a different vision for the city. That would at least give us a real choice. If Mandel runs virtually unopposed, we are likely to see the same kind of pathetic turnout for the election in October that we saw three years ago.

And speaking of the upcoming election, the pushback from the McCauley neighbourhood about yet another social housing project in its area should make someone take notice. Because of the new ward system, the yet to be announced candidates will need those McCauley votes if they want a seat on city council.

It’s not by chance that almost half of the housing in the area is social housing. This is a direct result of NOKOPS (Not Our Kind Of People Syndrome) that keeps these kinds of projects out of more well-heeled neighbourhoods. Can you imagine the uproar that would ensue if someone wanted to put a home for schizophrenics in Terwilliger or Old Glenora? No, those areas have far too much political clout for that to happen, so instead we decide that like should live among like.

McCauley is not a rich neighbourhood, so it only makes sense it should have little or no input into what goes on there. I hope the residents make their concerns loud and clear to those who are asking to represent them.

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